You’ve probably noticed that cyclists are everywhere – commutes, lunch breaks, weekends and holidays are all being taken up by cycling.
This current trend is nothing we haven’t seen before, as these things tend to come in cycles (no pun intended!) but it’s notable that those in the saddle have earned themseles a new moniker — MAMILs: Middle-Aged Men In Lycra. Yes, it’s predominantly middle-aged men who are reaching for the handlebars, and yes, the health benefits are obvious, but why else should we be pedalling this penchant for pedals?
Biologically Younger Than Drivers
Ditched the cardio commute for a cushy parking space near work? A study from King’s College London looked at over 2,400 pairs of identical twins and found those who did just three 45-minute rides a week were nine years younger biologically. Want to stick around to see our ever-increasing retirement age? On your bike.
Better Lifters Come Leg Day
Unlike most gym-bros, two-wheelers scoff at squats. The journal Medicine & Science in Sports and Exercise found cyclists were better at leg-day compound lifts like hack squats than males who didn’t hit the bikes. If you’re looking for a lower-body boost without scheduling in extra squatting time, cycling is an easy fix.
More Efficient At Work
Riding in to work may seal you that promotion without the need to stick your boss on the back. A study of 200 people carried out by the University of Bristol found that employees who exercised before work or at lunchtime improved their performance, boosted their motivation and maxed their ability to deal with stress. Stuck in a rut at your desk? Break the cycle – not literally, of course.
Saving Money Daily
Getting to work via pedal power isn’t just adding years on your life – it’s adding money in the bank. Research from Thinkmoney found rail commuters spent an average of £2,440 a year, while your average Ford Focus driver drops an annual £4,800 on petrol. Other than the initial purchase of your bike, and perhaps, a few bits of lycra, cycling is free. Stick the savings in your 2UNDR fund and treat yourself to a new pair of Gear Shifts whilst you’re at it!
Having More Sex
In you trudge, smelling from the train, pizza in the oven, Pointless on the telly. No wonder you’re hardly in the mood for romance. Research carried out at Harvard University found that men who cycle for at least three hours a week have a 30% lower risk of impotence than those who do little exercise. Ride home full of endorphins and jump off the bike straight into her arms.
Insomnia is a modern epidemic. If you find yourself counting the seconds, consider an evening ride before dropping off. Stanford University School of Medicine researchers found 20-30 minutes of hard cycling halved the time it took for insomniacs to get to sleep, and time in bed increased by almost an hour. An easy hack for better sleep – just make sure you’re off the bike first.
Type-2 diabetes risk is higher than ever, but PLOS Medicine found bikes are an easy way to beat the disease. The study measured Danish commuters, with regular cyclists 20% less likely to develop Type 2. So far, so obvious, but even those who started cycling during the month-long study were less likely to contract the disease. You can start now and be a healthier man tomorrow.